Maulana Azad Cultural and Educational vision remembered on his 60th death anniversary in Lucknow.
February 22 is the 60th death anniversary of great Indian leader and one of the heroes of Freedom movement of India. Maulana Abul Kalam Azad served as the First Minister of Education in Pandit Nehru’s cabinet from 1947 to 1958.
Guest speaker Prof. Rizwan Qaisar of Jamia Millia University, New Delhi, speaking on the cultural unity, as laid down Maulana Azad said that beside being head of two ministries, he had laid down the foundation of many institutions, both educational and cultural, which found bearings on the future of the country. Institutions like Anjuman e Islamiya and Madrasa e Islamiya are today 100 years old heritages. In the khutba e gaibee, Rai Sahab Raees e Ranchi, though being a Hindu, was the biggest donor in it. He was a proponent to produce not Maulanas but Mobasshir, said Prof Rizwan. Highlighting the generous thought of Azad, Prof Rizwan said that gets stood for the cultural and communal harmony of the country.
Echoing the ideas of Maulana Azad, Prof Rizwan said that not only the country was being divided but also the Muslims were being divided. Azad, at that time had prophetically said that Muslims will be seen with suspicion and as “one community 2 nations”. In the All India Muslim Azad conference held in 1940, Khan Bahadur Allah Baksh condemned the Muslim League and Jinnah, for Their demand of Pakistan. Just like him, Maulana Azad always stood for Political unity of the country. Maulana fought his first Parliamentary election from Rampur, against a Hindu Mahasabha candidate. Maulana Azad will always be remembered for his invaluable contribution to the nation,his vision and farsightedness .will always be remembered.
The Maulana’s vision was not limited to the borders of his own country or the confines of his own community. It embraced all of humanity. Mohammed Hamid Ali Khan quotes Asif Ali: “Tolerance to him did not mean religious tolerance. He believed in the absolute right of individual to differ and hold whatever opinion he believed to be correct”. He believed not just in the unity of Hindus and Muslims but in the brotherhood of man. In this he had his firm anchor in his religious beliefs. “The greatest tragedy for humankind and a confirmation of its rejection of its divine nature is that it forgot the universal relationship of its creation but instead established its relationships on the basis of plots of land and divisions of lineage. The earth that was made for love and mutual support was made a stage for mutual differences and quarrels. But Islam is the first voice in the world which sent an invitation for universal brotherhood and unity not on the basis of divisions erected by humankind but on the basis of the Unity of God who is to be worshiped and served.”
The greatest tribute to this towering personality is the consistency of his character and his unswerving loyalty to the cause of communal harmony and to Gandhi. He was a giant in the shadows of other giants but whereas others winced at times of trial, the Maulana was unswerving in his vision. His unshakeable belief in the brotherhood of man, his conviction in the unity of all countrymen It is this steadfastness borne out of conviction and faith that endows his writings and his person with a universal,
Eminent persons Like Rajender Bagga, Maulana Firangi mahli, Prof Irfan Ahmed and Mr. Shariq Alavi also spoke on the seminar. Dr. Quddus Hashmi, secretary of the Maulana Azad educational society anchored the program.
by Afzal Ali Shah Maududi